***** Glorious 24 years of The Challenge print journal *****


Vol. 24 No. 1 January - June 2015

The present day North-east India was ‘Kamrupa’ in the early historical period; straddling the seven-states of Indian Union, Bhutan, and Sylhet in Bangladesh. Later on, the north-eastern states were isolated from their traditional trading partners such as Bhutan and Myanmar.

The whole region has an ancient legacy of cultural homogeneity and brilliance. The region is vibrant in its ethnicity. It has more than two hundred ethnic groups and equal number of dialects. The hill states are predominantly inhabited by tribal people with a high degree of diversity. Besides the native people, migrants of neighbouring countries like Tibet, Thailand, Bangladesh and Burma have been residing here reflecting a unique social and cultural fabric of harmony and ethnical exchange.

The North-east is a frontier region in real sense with at least 2000 kms of border with Bhutan, China, Myanmar, and Bangladesh. The region is ethnically and linguistically diverse and it has distinct cultures and traditions.

There a number of festivals in India with varied ethnical and regional backdrop but the festivals and celebrations in the North-eastern states of India are a clourful reflection of the people and their lives. The seven states of the Northeast known as the ‘seven sisters’ are travellers’ paradise.

The diversity of India is symbolized by its cultural plurality. It has a large collection of antique songs, dance, music, traditions, arts, paintings, rites and rituals. The North-east India is a prominent region of cultural heritage.

The current issue offers a scope to realize the cultural potential and vigour of the North-east India through some articles on cultural heritage, literary arts, festivals, handicraft and traditions of the region. We can’t term the issue as a comprehensive one but it is our humble effort to look at the art and culture part of the North-east and we shall devote some more issues to it in future to leap forward towards comprehensiveness.

Heartily yours,
Manoj Kumar Pathak